I am an avid consumer of news and a heavy user of social media–I’m a big fan of the series of tubes we call the Internet. But after unplugging for three weeks to get married, I had some time to reflect on some unhelpful habits I felt myself developing online.
Twitter, Facebook, Google +, WordPress–I have intentionally chosen to use social networks as an opportunity to share my life experience in the hopes of encouraging others in their relationship with Christ and His Church. I wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t think it was something that God wanted me to do. Plus, I think it’s fun. But several months into the endeavor I found myself envying others more popular than me, even in this very tiny pool of Catholic apologists bloggers/authors/speakers etc. “Wow, they have 10,000 followers. Man, I’m a loser.” “That blog got that much traffic. I’m a bigger loser.”
How twisted is that? (You’d think I was getting paid or something.)
It truly is laughable, but it’s just good ol’ fashioned envy, and social networks facilitate it well. The desire to be someone/go somewhere/do something other than what God already has picked out for us. (Facebook envy is well-documented too). Social media gives everyone the opportunity to dream of being “famous,” and with that comes the envy of those who do gain in importance in all fields and subjects.
I don’t want to be part of that. I’d rather:
1) Regularly pray for those Christian leaders God has given greater levels of influence
2) Never pander or make inflammatory comments in hopes of becoming more popular.
3) And remember that my self-worth comes from Jesus Christ, not a few more clicks on a page.